(USA Features) A New York Times reporter was forced to delete tweets on Tuesday after suggesting that supporters of former President Donald Trump are “enemies of the state” and should be treated as such.
The reporter, Katie Benner, made her observations and comments as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s Jan. 6 committee kicked off hearings earlier in the day with appearances by four police officers from the DC and Capitol Police departments who battled rioters during the breach of the Capitol Building.
“Today’s #January6thSelectCommittee underscores the America’s current, essential natsec dilemma: Work to combat legitimate national security threats now entails calling a politician’s supporters enemies of the state,” Benner wrote.
“As Americans, we believe that state power should not be used to work against a political figure or a political party,” she added in the since-deleted tweets.
“But what happens if a politician seems to threaten the state? If the politician continues to do so out of office and his entire party supports that threat?”
She went on to suggest that the Pelosi-selected committee would deal with the “dilemma” because it was left “unresolved” following investigations into false claims that the 2016 Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government as well as a pair of impeachments of the former president.
“That leaves it up to voters, making even more essential free, fair access to the polls,” she concluded.
After getting major pushback, Benner deleted her tweets, claiming they were “unclearly worded.”
“I deleted unclearly worded tweets regarding the Jan 6. committee hearing,” she wrote.
I deleted unclearly worded tweets regarding the Jan 6. committee hearing.
— Katie Benner (@ktbenner) July 27, 2021
Several people took to social media to criticize Benner’s characterization of Trump’s estimated 74 million voters in 2020.
“That’s the best summary of the Biden Admin’s domestic national security strategy I’ve ever read,” wrote Rep. Jim Banks, an Indiana Republican who was appointed to the committee by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy but summarily rejected by Pelosi.
“Here we have an NYT reporter, channeling the views of the corrupt FBI and DOJ officials who leak to her, straight-up saying that your political opposition to the ruling regime makes you an enemy of the state by definition,” noted The Federalist co-founder Sean Davis.
Investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald chimed in as well.
“Absolutely amazing: the New York Times’ Justice Department reporter says the US faces an ‘essential natsec dilemma’: namely, that Trump supporters are ‘enemies of the state’ and all of the GOP is a threat to the State,” he tweeted.
“This is a reporter — not an op-ed writer — saying this,” he added.